Wednesday, 10 February 2010

Parents, Lock Up Your Children: Cinema's Best Sex

In what was pure jest, I suggested that The Mad Hatter continue his list of five greatest screen kisses by highlighting five greatest screen f&*%s. It sounds a bit crass, but sex is a given in films - how it turns out is another story. He suggested I do the list, and it was difficult and simple at the same time. Now I understand why making a top 5 is so difficult, five is a number that sucks. Too small. So firstly, I'd like to give some runners up: West Side Story and Romeo & Juliet both had beautiful scenes of lovers in bed, but for the life of me...I can't remember any actual sex. Sure the latter had naked butts, and the former had beautiful singing...but not quite the best. The Curious Case of Benjamin Button had two beautiful people in bed and Fincher did not make it gory like his last Brad Pitt outing. Ralph Fiennes preforms well (intended pun) in The English Patient and The End of the Affair and I would be remiss to not mention A History of Violence, Cold Mountain and The Reader - but on to the five.
#5 Sex In the Rain: Scarlett Johannson and Jonathan Rhys Myers in Match Point

Every movement these two make is tinged with overt sexuality, it's overwhelming. There is a particular scene involving a blind-fold that's quite...ummm....stirring, but strangely the sexiest of them all is the one with the least bit of screen time. Nola has just been insulted by the mother of her bourgeoisie fiance. She stalks out into the rain and Chris follows her, with a purpose. Scarlett + rain=awesomeness.
#4 Sex in Cafes: Diane Lane and Olivier Martinez
Why is cheating sex so delicious? Don't ask me. Ask these two. Adrien Lyne loves his sex (see Glenn Close for proof) and Unfaithful has many of them but they become more striking as it becomes more risky. That aggressive experience in the cafe while her suburban friends wait outside is memorable and well worth your time (not being nasty).
#3 Elizabethan (Poetic) Sex: Gwyneth Palthrow and Joseph Fiennes
His brother missed the mark, but the other Fiennes makes it. Shakespeare in Love is a lovely comedy, but that sex scene has been remembered for many reasons (including Palthrow's mammaries). Will has just found out that Thomas Kent is Viola De Lesseps, the lead is awesome. She asks "Can you love a player?" He answers, "Can you love a fool?" The unwrapping of her bound chest is sooooo romantic (swoon, ha) and Imelda Staunton's incessant rocking doesn't make it any less sensual. Lovely stuff. If only Cate had had a similar sex scene you know she was getting that Oscar. Grrr.
#2 Literary Sex: Keira Knightley and James McAvoy
This scene works on two levels, I'll begin with the boring one. Atonement rests on the fact that a note binds it all together, and on a larger scale Briony's novel hence it's so wise to have the (only) sex scene in a library literally on the books - the very thing that shapes their lives. Okay, enough of symbolism. On the good stuff. Robbie and Cecilia grew up together, but have grown apart. Still, the attraction is there and when a note mistakenly reaches her they confess their devotion. Then consumate it. Obviously Robbie is a rebel. Standing sex? Not British at all, who would have thought fully clothed stuff could be so...scintillating. It took me a long time to forgive Saoirse Ronan's interruption....
#1 Sex in the Carriage On A Ship: Kate Winslet and Leonardo DiCaprio
Need I go on? Well my heart will...go on. We know the story, Rose and Jack escape from Cal's bodyguard and find themselves in the room with carriage. Even before the sex it's nice. He climbs into the driver's seat." Where to miss?" He asks. She says: "Take me to the stars." And he does. That hand on the window, the kissing of the fingers - is there any way to deny this legendary scene? I don't think so...
...But maybe you do. What is your favourite bedroom (not literally) scene.
NOTES: It's interesting, three of the featured women went on to Oscar nominations (Winslet, Palthrow, Lane) with Palthrow winning. Johansson and Knightey were Golden Globe nominated. Yet none of the men saw Oscar love...Is there a trend here?

PS. Did you try to guess the answer here? Please do.


The Mad Hatter said...

Great list! And of these I'd have to say that ATONEMENT would be tops for me.

It might be because it's early, but I can't seem to think of any additional ones off the top of my head. The only thing I can think of is that moment in AMELIE when she wonders how many people are having an orgasm right that moment (Answer: 15).

Heather said...

Great List! I'm glad you had Jack and Rose and #1 and the Matchpoint one is excellent.

I might have added Reece and Sarah in Terminator or possibly. That's just my three cents.

Nigel Maruva Chikukwa said...

lol. that window scratch Andrew, tsk tsk tsk (Titanic).

Mike Lippert said...

Excellent list. I'd add just a few others which I will just name by title: Mulholland Drive, Last Tango in Paris, The Notebook. But really, you've hit the nail on the head, five is just too small a number to include all great sex from over 100 years worth of film.

The Mad Hatter said...

@ Heather... I think Connor & Reese was the very first sex scene I ever saw.

Heather said...

@ Hatter.........I think it may have been mine as well! We must be near the same age!

Andrew: Encore Entertainment said...

mad hatter atonement almost made #1.

heather glad to see some love for match point. and it seems you and mad are bonding over terminator, and for the weirdest of reasons. carry on.

[hangs head in shame]

mike if only i liked mulholland drive more, but i did consider it...

Walter L. Hollmann said...

The Atonement scene is Big fan. It's my #1, but I completely understand the Titanic spot. Match Point would probs be my #2. GREAT list.

Ross McG said...

good list EE, glad you took Hatter's advice.
youre right - Adrien Lyne does great sex, much more realistic than the usual guff.
the Titanic sex scene is pretty laugable, done by a director whose sex scenes are laughable (see The Terminator).
and i cant take J Rhys Meyers seriously as an actor, so im hardly gonna take him seriously when hes doing the nasty
great sex scenes?
- The Tall Guy
- The Big Easy
- Body Heat
- The Naked Gun